One of the most awe-inspiring adventures I had in Singapore was my trip to the Gardens by the Bay. Particularly upon entering the Cloud Forest, a cooled dome conservatory with an incredible design.
The Gardens by the Bay spans 250 acres of reclaimed land near the Marina Reservoir and serves to enhance life with added gardens and greenery around the city. The area is currently comprised of three main areas – Bay East Garden, Bay Central Garden and Bay South Garden. The Bay South Garden is where the majority of the attractions are located.
The Bay South Garden at Gardens By the Bay
In the Bay South Garden, you can visit the two conservatories (the Cloud Forest and the Flower Dome), the Supertree Grove, the Children’s Garden and other themed gardens. Each of these areas has an entry fee, though some of the other gardens are free to visit.
While there, we decided to visit the OCBC Skywalk in the Supertree Grove area, the Cloud Forest and the Flower Dome.
Other attractions include:
- DragonFly & Kingfisher Lakes
- Heritage Gardens
- World of Plants
- The Canyon
- Sun Pavilion
- Art Sculptures
In total, after walking the three exhibits we attended and a few other areas, we spend around four hours exploring. Visiting the domes was a nice way to escape the heat for a brief time.
The Cloud Forest
The Cloud Forest is the smaller of the two domes, and at its center, it features a structure with gorgeous waterfalls and plant life. The path is laid out so that it’s easy to follow – it takes you from the falls to through the main garden and up to the Lost World, the Cloud Walk, the Treetop Walk, and then back down to the Crystal Mountain. Finally, you visit the Secret Garden on your way out. This was hands down my favorite of the locations that we visited. I loved everything from the Lego plant sculptures, to the Jurassic Park-style displays, to the teeny-tiny orchids that were visible through magnifying lenses.
The Flower Dome
In comparison to the Cloud Forest, the Flower Dome is much larger, though the displays are spread out horizontally rather than the vertical arrangement in the Cloud Forest. Both locations have breathtaking wood sculptures, but the dragon in the Flower Dome was certainly my favourite. The flower dome has diplays organized by region. There’s the Meditteranean Garden, the California Garden, the Succulent Garden, the Australian Garden, the South African Garden, and the South American Garden. There’s also an Olive Garden, a Flower Field, and a Baobab tree area.
The OCBC Skywalk
The OCBC Skywalk is a 128-meter walk 22-meters above the ground. The walk gives you a view of the gardens and the bay, but because we did this during the afternoon, we missed out on getting to see the spectacular light show that they put on at night.
Depending on what you do in the gardens, your trip can either be 100% free or rather expensive. Entry into each of the domes has its own fee as does the Supertree Grove. Honestly, the Cloud Forest was my favorite of the three exhibits we visited, so I definitely felt it was worth the cost. The other two, however, I definitely could have skipped. You can get much better views of Singapore elsewhere (the Supertree Grove is a short walk and the views are just okay) and the Flower Dome, while it had an amazingly diverse collection of plant life just didn’t seem as impressive as the Cloud Forest.
Pro Tips for Visiting the Gardens by the Bay
- Bring plenty of water – depending on how much you explore/wander the area, you’ll experience pretty warm weather, be sure to stay hydrated
- Wear comfortable shoes – you’ll do plenty of walking!
- Dress comfortably – and note that some of the walkways are mesh metal, so there will be people under you
- Plan for about half a day – or a few hours to really explore
Gardens by the Bay
18 Marina Gardens Drive
What about you?
What parks or gardens have you visited in your travels?
I’d love to hear about them in the comments below.